Sunday, January 29, 2017

Samizdata: #GamerGate - the canary in the coal mine and my thoughts

Perry de Havilland wites:

Looking back, it’s hard to overstate the cultural significance of GamerGate: it marked when the Left suddenly and unexpectedly lost control of social media, right at the point where the influence of social media actually started to matter.
 So certain was the Left that they had won the culture war, so confident with the established media under their effective control that ‘truth’ was theirs to declare, motivating them to gave up on any pretence of objectivity.
And in his (her ?) opinion this lack of introspection / misreading of the populace is what cost the British establishment the Brexit vote and America (both Right and Left) the Trump vote.

I agree.

Chris over at Carnifex,org and I have discussed this a few times at our Friday night games. GamerGate was a warning sign that everyone missed.  (I don't think I have actually convinced him), it was the first time in recent memory that a group wasn't cowed by the collective press.  The gaming press would say "You're a bunch of racists and sexists" and GamerGate would respond with a "No, were not.  Fuck you" and double down.

That is exactly what happened with Trump and there were people (I am proud to say I was one, although I underestimated Trump's chance of winning greatly) who were pointing it out:

Anyway, she responded that London had voted against Brexit too, and then followed up with something on the order of , "Only bigoted ignorant rubes voted for leaving the EU", a couple seconds passed and she followed up with, "The same bigoted ignorant rubes from places like the south that are voting for Donald Trump".  Everyone laughed.  (Those are paraphrases not actual direct quotes but they are pretty close). 

I looked over at the guy who was sitting next to me and he was looking kind of quizzical too so I said "Do you think that constantly being referred to as bigoted ignorant rubes might be one of the reasons people are voting for Trump?"
Now we have Trump and an Immigration ban that people find to be the worst outrage in the history of moral outrages and people still aren't catching on.  Protest all you want, you are strengthening Trump's power in his base.  Call his supporters racists, homophobes etc.  They will wear it like a badge of honor.  

I'm not saying don't engage, I'm saying engage his supporters, not the policy.  In the words of Alinsky (probably taken out of context but it will work) Isolate the Target.  Personalize it.  The make Trump supporters live up to their ideals.

1.  Ask if they know anyone affected by the ban?
2.  If they say yes, ask how it is affecting them.  If they say know introduce them to someone who is.
3.  Make them justify the ban as applied to those individuals while linking it back totheir sense of community and charity.

That's specific to this case, but in general that is how you are going to beat Trump, not with noise and disruption.  
(also if you really want to beat Trump get Ivanka on your side, instead of insulting her (Joss Whedon) appeal to her.)

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